UNITED NATIONS (Dec. 21)
The United Nations General Assembly will adjourn its current session this Tuesday until February with the Palestine issue no longer scheduled for discussion until the eight regular session of the General Assembly at the end of next year. Israel notified the United Nations this week-end that it is withdrawing the Palestine item it had placed on the agenda as a counter-complaint against the Arab nations.
The Israel complaint accused the Arabs of violating the U.N. Charter and the armistice agreement with Israel. It would have come up of discussion after the Assembly’s recession February. However, after the Assembly’s failure last Thursday to adopt the resolution sponsored by eight neutral powers proposing direct Arab-Israel peace talks, Ambassador abba Eban, chief of the Israel delegation at the U. N., declared that Israel would take here complains to other United Nations organs — presumably the Arab-Israeli Mixed Armistice Commissions or to the U. N. Palestine Conciliation Commission.
The eight-power resolution calling for direct Arab-Israel talks — supported by by Israel and bitterly opposed by the Arabs — failed to obtain the two-thirds majority vote needed for final adoption by the General Assembly, although the same resolution had been adopted a few days earlier by the U.N. Special Political Committee. The resolution was supported at the Assembly by the United States, Britain, France and the other Western Powers, but was opposed by the Soviet Block, the Arab countries and some Latin American states.
ISRAEL DISAPPOINTED AT U. N. FAILURE TO URGE DIRECT PEACE TALKS
Although disappointed with the fact that the General Assembly failed to adopted the resolution advocating direct Arab-Israel peace talks, the Israel delegation at the United Nations drew some consolation from the Assembly developments. Ambassador Eban cited the following facts:
1. The Arabs had initiated the Palestine issue in the General Assembly. Their complaints had been thoroughly aired and had been dismissed by the General Assembly which had refused to act in any way on their complaints.
2. The General Assembly and the Political Committee had rejected attempts to have past resolution on Palestine reaffirmed. Specifically, it had rejected the Arab demand to this effect and the General Assembly had rejected the Philippine amendment which would have made the past U. N. resolutions the basis of direct Arab-Israel negotiations. On the other hands, however, the Assembly failed to take any formal action to bring about direct negotiations although a majority had favored such action.
3. Israel and the Arab states are now to be left alone to work out their differences and the U. N. will not seek influence a political settlement. “The issue now leaves the international forum,” Mr. Eban said, “and enters the sphere of direct relations between the parties.”
The Israel delegation pointed out that Israel had long advocated this course before the Arabs sought unsuccessfully to obtain a resolution room the General Assembly. Israel, the envoy declared, had made its stand on peace clear in its recent six-point declaration and remained ready to negotiate on these conditions with any and all of the Arab states.